Get Set, Go!

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If Pat’s kick high and right of Les Dawson at the Millennium Stadium signalled the end of the season (and near pandemonium amongst the Arsenal hordes), then it also seems to have fired the starting gun for this summer’s proper business: transfer nonsense.

There’s loads of it already, it’s amazing. On the one hand, we’ve got contract talks – Pires wants two years, Freddie wants a new deal, Dennis has got the one year he (and most of the fans) all wanted, and we’ve got to try to sort something out with Ashley – and on the other, there are the possible incomers, with Wenger’s widely touted soundbite of wanting “one or two world-class players” getting people’s tongues wagging.

This Guardian article mirrors my own personal views: That we need a new striker, we need to strengthen on the right – either at right-back or in right-midfield or both – and I also wouldn’t be surprised if another keeper came in to challenge Lehmann (properly challenge him – so not like Almunia).

Lauren is a fine right-back, and has got on with his job with no bother, but he was exposed time and again on Saturday, and he didn’t look at all comfortable. Fair enough, he was playing someone with great talent (though I say it through gritted teeth), but perhaps that’s still an area we need to look hard at.

At right-midfield, we have been linked with Alexander Hleb (Stuttgart) and Wright-Phillips, and I think something will happen there too, though whether either of those players are the real targets is open to debate. If Bentley has a future with us, it might also be in that role, but I think he’s got a fight on his hands to prove he is yet worthy of a starting berth, especially in the middle of midfield.

The same Guardian article also points out we need more variety in our play, and I think there’s a point there. When our pinpoint passing game works it’s awesome, but when it doesn’t, we need to change things around a bit. More crosses and a man who can score from them would be good.

So, three new players, tie up deals with Bob, Freddie, and Co, sort out the Cole thing one way or another and use more width. That’s all thanks Arsene.


Arsenal since about 1979. Thick, thin and all that.

This Post Has 11 Comments

  1. oliverchaddock

    I’ve thought for a long time that Lauren needs replacing (i had hoped it would be Trabelsie) but I don’t think we should/will buy a new right back this summer. Lauren does a good enough job 90% of the time, and i expect that to increase to 95% if we get someone new to play in front of him. For the longer term, both Hoyte and Eboue have the potential to replace Lauren, and both have the pace that he sometimes lacks.

    Two keepers I’d love to see at Arsenal are Cudicini and Given, but I’m not too optimistic. Chelski will be loathe to sell Cudicini (especially to us). I think we could get Given, but that would create a new problem – who would become first choice, and who would be content sitting on the bench? Arsene also has a habit of going for very tall keepers, which Given isn’t. But there’s no doubt Casillas is one of the finest around, and I believe Given isn’t far behind.

    I agree that a new striker could be in the cards, but it’s tricky finding someone who could offer us something different, still fit in the arsenal style of play AND be able to play alongside Henry. Any suggestions? Anyone??

  2. darkgunner

    I think we should buy Dean Ashton. He’s a great header of the ball and someone we coudl bring on to change a game when our pinpoint passing isn’t getting through. He’s my tip for the summer.

  3. Iwan

    Allthough Ashton has done well in his short stint in the Premiership, Wenger needs a striker that could play in the Champions League. Could Ashton make that great a step up in such a short time? They should definitely look at Gabbidon at centre back though!

  4. Gerry Gooner

    Ibrahimovic has it all but previously turned us down. Tall, strong, skillful….very difficult to see where the payer will come from…but then I’m no Wenger. I think Lauren is under-rated and if he had some cover on Saturday he might not have been exposed as much. We have to balance it- he’s fntastic going forward and we may lose that with a more solid right back. Overall our tactics were bad on saturay and maybe the platers (like Lauren) were exposed too much?

  5. Michael

    People keep saying we don’t have a Plan B when the opposition won’t let us play football, but I thought Sat was a good start. Bergkamp and Reyes just aren’t the ideal strikers for that system (is Reyes really a striker at all?!). Anyway, if we do buy another striker it needs to be someone who can make a system like that work a bit better.

  6. simon talker

    anyone know anything about this proto chap? out of a belgium club i believe. apparently steve rowley has been watching him for most of the season.

    dont know what you make of the whole cole thing. personally if he wants to stay, then great – but he has cunted every single one of us and the club off in his behaviour. i dont want to hear “yes, i will be at arsenal next season and the season after that” – i want to hear that hes signed a contract extension and not be thinking about doing a Bosman.

    think we need to dump pascal ze rascal too. After our recent defensive stability would you really like to see this guy a secondary support? I for one, would not.

  7. Vince

    I reckon lauren is okay….who else could we go for….can’t think of anyone in the prem I’d rather have (and what’s a plater?) The Dean Ashton idea isn’t too way off really is it, and let’s be honest , he’s a lot better than chavski’s 25 mil emille dogba, and he’s a champion! Anyway, I bet Sir Wenger already knows who he will be going for, I trust him don’t you?

    And I’m still laughing from Saturday!!!

  8. RotorGoat

    Yes, still laughing. I love that pic (in all the papers) of the team at the centre circle just as Pat’s pen goes in. Priceless.

  9. Tim Farish

    I’ve heard one or two fellow gooners talk about Dean Ashton over the last few days and Le Boss is supposed to be interested so could be on the cards. Can’t see Ibrahimavic coming if Juve have (allegedly in yestarday’s Sunday Times) turned down a 48m Euro offer from Real Madrid. Struggling to think of who else fits the bill at the moment but do have faith that Le Boss has a trick up his sleeve. Lauren’s ok but would like Willy Sagnol, and apparently he’s available. On the midfield issue – is Machareno(?) still available from River Plate. There was lots of talk last summer but it went cold. As for a keeper…god knows. Just hope we get it sorted before ManUre do as for all Lehman’s heroics – he is still a nightmare on crosses and the other teams in europe know this.

  10. Dev

    Yea i agree we’ve not had such a terrible season, i look at it as blessing in disguise! The kids have come through, none of them have celebrated their 21st birthday just yet!

    I’d like to see:

    Owen as our fox in the box, he’ll get us atleast 20 goals in all competitions.

    SWP or Hleb, to give us a robben effect coming from the right flank which will work well with thierry and pires coming in from the left, and they’ll get goals

    A defender who doesnt mind being 4th choice but will still give us quality cover e.g. Koffour or even another one of our starlets coming through the ranks, I agree Cygan must go!

    & a goalkeeper (Proto, Frey or Cudicini) for obvious reasons

    This will, in my opion give us enough ammunition to GUN down chelski

    I look fwd to next season!

  11. Stian

    I’m starting to get the feeling that Wenger may very well trust Lehmann as our number one for one more season, and I don’t like it at all!!

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